This topic is hard to write about: first, because there’s a certain social opprobrium in being against feminism - especially if you’re a Democrat and a liberal. Second, because feminism is (and I would argue always has been) so ingrained in our collective culture that exposing it takes a lot of writing.

I’m going to start with what I consider both the most difficult and most important concept: feminism is not, and has never been, about exterminating patriarchy.

Feminism is about providing women with freedom without accountability; while at the same time attempting to define for men what it means to be a man (which happens to overlap with what it meant to be a man under patriarchy.)

Feminism uses patriarchal ideology to advance its own interests. After all, one of the defining characteristics of patriarchy, when it comes to men, is the demand that men put women’s concerns - and especially their safety - above the concerns of men. Under patriarchy, a man who fails to put woman’s safety and concerns above his own, is not a real man.

Feminism uses that patriarchal idea to ridicule and shame men who become critics of feminism. It’s simple to do: any time men organize themselves: for example, in a “Men’s Rights Movement” (a terrible name, by the way), you simply question their masculinity. “No ‘real man’ would be part of such a group.” It’s a common example. It’s easy to say, and hard to disagree with. Real men do not need help or advocacy, after all. Men take care of their problems themselves. You may say that’s unfair or unequal, or even “patriarchal”, but the idea is so ingrained in our culture it’s useless to fight against. Feminists, in fact, are quickest to use it. Which is an example of how feminism is both (a) not about equality, and (b) not abut eliminating patriarchy. Feminists are very quick to advance patriarchal ideas, when it suits their interests.

Feminism is also not about “equality”. The claim, however, is extraordinarily useful: after all, who could be against “equality”? Feminism is about advancing the interests of women, period. And particularly about advancing the interests of the women who are already among the most privileged people on the planet. (By the way, if anyone reading this sincerely believes feminism is about equality, I’m not questioning your sincerity: I’m just saying you’re wrong.)

The next part is more difficult: it’s an attempt to show the cultural and biological roots of patriarchy, and how it’s intimately related to the reality of male disposability. It’s important because it illuminates why patriarchal roles (at least for men) are so difficult to dispose of, while at the same time showing why feminism has been so successful, despite the ridiculousness of many of their demands and actions, and the fact that feminists themselves can’t agree about, well, anything, really, including what it means to be a feminist.

Humans are thought to have evolved in Africa 5-8 million years ago. Many species of humans are thought to be dead ends, however:

When you think about human physiology, humans are very strange creatures. We combine two evolutionary traits that don’t naturally go together: very large heads, and bipedal locomotion. The result is very difficult pregnancies for human mothers, combined with a very long period of helplessness for human babies.

If you ever watch nature shows on TV, you might have seen a gazelle, for example, or a wildebeest give birth. The process is very quick and apparently painless. Furthermore, the gazelle is on its feet within minutes, and able to follow to the herd within a few minutes more.

Human birth, on the other hand, is extraordinarily painful. It takes many hours, and it’s so difficult (in the absence of modern medicine) it’s not uncommon for human mothers to actually die in the process. Then, once the baby is born, its utterly helpless, and dependent on its mother, for at least a year, and relatively helpless for years after that. Furthermore, in the last months leading up to childbirth, a human mother both requires more resources than others, while simultaneously hampered in her ability to gather the resources she needs. Then she continues in that condition (assuming she’s nursing and caring for her baby) for at least a year after that.

What that means is that a human mother needs to live in a community of some kind, and for there to be at least one person (the stronger, faster, tougher, and higher-ranking the better) who is especially concerned with both protecting her and her child and providing the additional resources she needs to successfully produce a new, living human being.

That many species of humans died out is at least some evidence that they never successfully made the transition from “me-first” to “her-first” in terms of biological and/or cultural imperatives. This transition, however, is necessary for humans (as a species) to survive. If you abandon, or fail to provide for, a human mother, because she’s consuming more than she’s producing, or slowing the group down, or whatever, you may increase your individual chances of survival, but you eliminate the chances that your species will survive.

Furthermore, if you assume that groups of humans competed with each other for resources (such as food, shelter, territory, or water), groups that successfully protected the women, even at the cost of losing men, would eventually and inevitably out-compete groups that failed to do so. The reason is simple: the reproductive rate is determined by the number of women. (As an extreme example: one man and 100 women could produce 100 children in a year. One woman and 100 men could produce 1.) The corollary is the evolutionary cost of losing an individual man is very low. The cost of losing a woman, on the other hand, represents an absolute, irreplaceable decline in reproductive rate of the entire group. If there was something dangerous to do, men did it.

This may be one explanation for the difference in success rates of men and women when it comes to reproducing: women have twice the successful reproductive rate as men. Another way to put it is that men have historically been about twice as likely to die without reproducing, compared women.

Anyway, if you’ve made it through all that, you should see where I’m going: the idea that a man’s role is to protect and provide for women is not new. It is perhaps as old as the human species itself - or, at least, that part of the human species we’re descended from. Patriarchy may have codified, or emphasized, the idea, but the idea itself is not new.

Here are some examples of patriarchy in action:

[li]When the Titanic sank, in 1912, 72.7% of the women survived, vs. 19% of the men. Similarly, among children 15 and younger, 62.6% of the girls survived, vs. 22.5% of the boys. Subsequently, some of the men who did survive, killed themselves, because of the shame of being a man who lived. [/li][li]Similarly, in nearly every war that’s been fought, it’s been men who were sent to do the killing, and the dying. Not women. (During WWI, “white feather girls” used to pin white feathers on men of draft age, that were not in military clothing.) [/li][li]Today, the most dangerous jobs are done mostly by men: fishing, logging, pilots and flight engineers, garbage disposal, roofing, iron and steel workers, construction, farming and ranching, trucking and mining. [/li][li]In fact, 92% of all workplace fatalities happen to men. To put it differently, you’re 11 times more likely to die on the job if you’re a man than if you’re a woman. [/li][li]Women are disproportionately likely to get custody of children after a divorce, and men are disproportionately likely to go to jail for failing to pay child support, even if they don’t have money to pay it. (Remember Walter L. Scott, the man shot 8 times in the back? He was running because he had a warrant for child support.)[/li][li]Ever wonder why news reports say (for example) “100 people died, including 17 women and children”? This, again, is patriarchy: the idea that women’s (and children’s) lives are more valuable than men’s.[/li]

[li]Then there’s the sentencing gap between men and women: [/li][quote]
If you’re a criminal defendant, it may help—a lot—to be a woman. At least, that’s what Prof. Sonja Starr’s research on federal criminal cases suggests. Prof. Starr’s recent paper, “Estimating Gender Disparities in Federal Criminal Cases,” looks closely at a large dataset of federal cases, and reveals some significant findings. After controlling for the arrest offense, criminal history, and other prior characteristics, “men receive 63% longer sentences on average than women do,” and “[w]omen are…twice as likely to avoid incarceration if convicted.” This gender gap is about six times as large as the racial disparity that Prof. Starr found in another recent paper.


And there’s this case:

From the same source:

You might think an organization dedicated to equality between men and women would be up in arms about such an obvious and well-researched disparity. And you’d be right; unless you were talking about feminists:

[Bolding mine.]

None of this is what feminists want to hear about, or talk about, or even acknowledge.

What they prefer to do, is to complain about men taking up too much room on the subway. Or to lionize people like Emma Sulkowicz, who made up a lie, turned an innocent man’s life into a living hell, completed her senior thesis by carrying a mattress around, and is now capitalizing on her success by releasing a sex tape.

Or by promoting the idea that we live in a “rape culture” by getting young women to walk around undressed to draw attention to “slut walks”. (That we live in a “rape culture” is especially silly, given that rape is the second most serious crime there is, after actually killing someone.) That feminists are not particularly concerned about prison rape - rape that happens primarily to men - perhaps goes without saying.

Anyway, I’ve written more than what most people are willing to read, so if you’ve made it this far, congratulations! Please comment.

Dude, enough already.

A controversial thesis!

All I can say, at the moment, is that traits that enable a society to survive when society is a few families in the jungle or tribes in the mountains may not be the same traits that are rewarded in a rich and prosperous modern society.

So why be surprised when niches are exploited?

This is an interesting article from the New Republic in that vein. The writer calls for freeing women from the need for full time employment, since most women don’t want full time employment:

So is this feminism, or anti-feminism?

Cite? (You’d better be prepared to back up the thesis that the entire endeavor is about that, not just this or that individual or organization)

Most feminist criticisms of the “men’s rights movement” have been that its participants are not sufficiently different from “men” in the “real men” sense. Few feminists embrace the phrase “real man” as some kind of positive term.

I’ve seen this often repeated, and believe it’s a misunderstanding of the nature of evolution. Evolution works on the individual level, meaning for each individual man there is no greater catastrophe than losing his own life (or that of his children). Other men & women in the group only matters to the extend that they’re close family (which of course they tended to be) – the group as a whole, not so important. The difference in reproductive success was due to women being handled as resource on line with cattle and to polygamy. (also birthing was dangerous. In recorded history it was only recently that the average lifespan of women exceeded that of men)

And Emma Sulkowicz is done for. Much like Monica Lewinsky she’ll never be able to outrun the story; she ruined her own life unless she wants to turn it into some kind of reality show like Paris Hilton.

Anyway, modern feminists are silly. Patriarchy, trigger warnings and micro aggression. Nobody takes them serious outside US campuses.

3rd wave feminism is held in contempt by so many (including a lot of women) for three reasons:

1). It relies on a lot of shit awful arguments. The wage gap myth has been debunked. The claim that 1 in 5 women are raped on college campuses has been debunked. The claim that we live in a “rape culture” (whatever the fuck that is) has been debunked. Even the once unassailable idea that men are “privileged” and lead easier lives than women has clashed with observable reality and lost.

2). It focuses its energy on bullshit: “Manspreading” (I’ll close my legs when you put your fucking handbag under the seat!), “Mansplaining” (because, of course, women never talk down to men :rolleyes:), rape jokes (but not murder jokes, cancer jokes, holocaust jokes, pedophilia jokes etc…), trigger warnings (toughen up!) and so on…

3). Their standards are applied inconsistently, especially when it comes to the sins of white men vs men of colour. If a white man suggests that women should dress a little more conservatively so as to avoid attracting the attentions of murderous, psychopathic rapists, he’ll be pilloried from here to the fucking moon. But millions of women the world over are forced, either directly or indirectly, even in Western countries like the U.S. and the U.K., to wear shit like the niqab, a garment which explicitly equates piety with the total invisibility of women and the response is…crickets..

So yeah, anti-feminism, at least as it pertains to this modern incarnation of feminism is actually a pretty tenable position.

Look, I’ll agree that the vast preponderance of feminist writings are nonsensical, but you really have not helped your cause with the OP.

I don’t think any right thinking person has an issue with many of the things you write against, except a few… women getting easier treatment in the criminal courts for the same offence for instance.

This does not describe most feminists or feminism as far as my understanding. In my understanding, feminism (for most feminists, anyway) really is about advocating that women be treated equally and fairly by law and by society.

Do you agree with the main point of the posting, that for almost all of human history women were both weaker and more valuable and needed to be protected? Do you agree there is some truth to that, a lot, none? What do you think?

I’d like to hear of some pre-modern cultures where females were considered more valuable than men. Can you tell me of one where, for instance, female babies were thought to be more fortuitous than male?

Because it seems to me that throughout history, boys were considered far more valuable than girls. After all, boys could help out on the farm, while all girls were good for was for dumping on some other family - and even then, you had to pay a dowry.

Women may have been considered valuable property that required protection, but then, you could say the same about livestock. Doesn’t mean that men were less valuable than sheep.

As a political movement I agree. As a social movement, where women “vote” by expressing their desires, it’s a hodgepodge of inconsistent positions. Like women should get equal pay and equal promotion opportunities and should work, but only if they choose to. As a political movement, feminism is about equality: rights and responsibilities. As a social phenemenon, most women fall prey to human nature: they want the good stuff that comes with equality without giving up the good stuff that comes with inequality.

There might be some truth to that part. I’m not sure how it’s connected to what he says about feminism, though, which seems mostly wrong to me.

Agree with both of your points

If feminists really wanted equality, why aren’t they screaming for the chick in this video to get charged with assault? She clearly hit the guy first, just not as hard, because she’s a girl.

For those who don’t care enough to watch, it’s FSU QB Deandre Johnson hitting a girl in the face AFTER she hit him in the face. He was kicked off the team and charged with assault, she got nothing.

Feminists, I presume, are outraged that she wasn’t charged, but I haven’t heard any complaints.

Other than equal sentencing for equal crime and circumstances (which I agree with), what are your policy suggestions?

It seems like he was grabbing her shoulder and pulling her hair at the beginning of the video. Since he laid hands on her first, her punch can be motivated by self defense. Especially if they are strangers, I don’t see what is wrong with what she did.

It says he grabbed her (after she “confronted” him about pushing past him) and then she hit him. Would have to know more, but it’s not quite as one-sided as her just hitting him…

Excellent post. OP, you may be interested in looking into the evo-psych movement to bolster your claims.

That was hitting him? Looked more like a slow dab by a weak teddy bear.

Girls are slow and weak, while they shouldn’t go around punching people, you cannot respond with your full force.